Charlie’s Lullaby (#317)

“Beeyyyy-ah–beeyyyy-ah–beyah tohh bu-way!”

That’s as near the spelling as I can render for Charlie’s singing in the shower of “Mayi A Gaye” as sung by Boukan Eksperyans from Haiti. It is a lullaby from a CD, Planet Sleeps, that friends gave us when Charlie was born. We kept the liner notes but lost the CD in our cross-country moves. When a friend had a baby, I came across the CD again and then downloaded the songs from iTunes and put them on Charlie’s iPod.
Yhanaway Hay Yowna.

Charlie sang that one–a Native American lullaby–walking up the stairs for his nightly “takea hot showah.” I was readjusting the couch cushions and moving the toys, shoes, backpack, books into more appropriate places than on the floor. I paused to hear Charlie’s brief serenade.

Once upon a hot St. Louis summer evening, Charlie (my infant-in-arms) and I would navigate the floor to the sounds of Planet Sleeps. My favorite was “Ana Latu,” sung by the Kingdom of Tonga Cultural Group (last summer, in need of a bit of comfort myself, I put that song onto a CD to play in the black car.) Charlie was little, then, and I still see his big brown eyes staring over my shoulder, as reflected in the dark night of the window.

Now he is big and he carries in the groceries and the garbage out. Now Charlie sings to me.

Laughing, running on the lawn, calling out “Daddy home, Daddy talk home,” Charlie waited with me (watching from the porch) for Jim to come home from visiting his mother, now in another hospital, farther away.

Now Charlie comforts me.


One Response to “Charlie’s Lullaby (#317)”
  1. I have had this moment. And, your memoir brought tears to my eyes. Our little boys are so perfect. Look at what they teach us.

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